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December 2009

Company Profile: Proment Project Management, Inc.

Gear manufacturers who are interested in considering the powder-metal process have this company to rely on as an experienced and capable resource.

With gear manufacturers constantly on the lookout for new business opportunities, Rom Koubi has a suggestion: “Consider powder metal,” he says. “It’s efficient and flexible, with an ever-growing range of applications, and we are here to show you the ropes.”By “we” he means Proment Project Management, Inc., the company that his father, Shimon Koubi, founded […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Noise Reduction in Plastic Gears

When noise reduction is incorporated into design, the outcome will be increased quality and precision. The following is a practical approach to producing low-noise molded gears.

Gear noise reduction is best addressed in the design phase. Establishing optimized tooth counts, ratios, pitch, pressure angle, helix angle, tooth proportions, and modifications early in the design cycle can provide a robust and cost-effective solution to noise reduction.  The Nature of NoiseNoise created by a gear-driven enclosed drive is produced by a rather complex […]
Richard R. Kuhr

Better Bevel Gearing

Industry leader Gleason increases productivity in manufacturing straight bevel gears with a powerful suite of tools, techniques, and specialized equipment.

Above a ratio of 2.5 it is common gear design practice to convert a gearset from two generated members into a generated pinion and a non-generated gear. The name of those gearsets is FORMATETM. The idea to create this process came from the phenomenon that the generating roll to form the gear member takes an […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Nanomaterials for Gear Lubrication Solutions

In this article we report on a new product, NanoLub, which is used as a performance-enhancing additive to gear lubricants for extended lifetimes, lower operating costs, and improved power efficiency. The product is based on inorganic WS2 fullerene-like nanoparticles (IF-WS2) formulated either as an oil concentrate or paste, and has been developed to improve the […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

November 2009

Company Profile: Proto Manufacturing Ltd.

A testing equipment company with its roots in manufacturing possesses particular insights into the process that strengthen its products and the services it provides.

When you think about it, what better background could there be for a manufacturer of testing systems than to have once made parts meeting the exacting standards of the automotive industry? Such was the case for Proto Manufacturing, according to Robert Drake, sales manager.“Erhard Brauss launched the company in 1967 as a parts manufacturer,” he […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Company Profile: Parker Industries, Inc.

Already an established presence in the gear-manufacturing industry, new ownership has resulted in the rebirth of this company. Read on for an impressive progress report.

When Bruce Cowley acquired Parker Industries in 2008 it was a positive experience for everyone involved. “I already knew the Parker family, including George, the founder, and his wife Pamela, and I had a great deal of respect for what they’d done with the company over the years,” he says. “Pamela took over leadership when […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

October 2009

Company Profile: Promess, Inc.

With its assembly and test systems in use worldwide, this company has a fascinating history as well as a bright and productive future.

When Larry Stockline launched Promess, Inc., with his partners in 1984, there were approximately 200 companies in the United States manufacturing various chip-making machines for drilling, milling, grinding, and turning, etc. Promess designed, manufactured, and marketed sensors for monitoring machine-tool life. Five years later there were less than 20 of these OEMs left in the […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Robotic Gear Processing

As companies around the world seek ways in which to lower production costs, robotic deburring and manufacturing systems can definitely help level the playing field.

Henry Ford once said “If you need a new process and don’t install it, you pay for it without getting it.” Nowhere is this more applicable than in today’s manufacturing climate in which domestic manufacturers face tough competition from literally all over the globe. Because these competitors often have access to similar, or even the […]
Robert E. Lee Greene III

Programmed to Enter New Markets

As it expands into new markets, including wind energy, Oerlikon Fairfield adopts a new CNC programming system that has increased both flexibility and productivity.

As anyone in the gearing world knows, Oerlikon Fairfield Manufacturing is a leading provider of engineered gear and transmission systems for off-highway and original equipment manufacturers throughout the world. The company originally specialized in parts up to 48 inches in diameter, which covered virtually all mobile equipment gearing needs. But market demands for larger gear […]
Jerry Fireman

Fatigue Performance of Prealloyed PM Steel

North American Hoganas successfully demonstrates the excellent heat-treated properties of the newly developed prealloyed Cr-Ni steel Astaloy CMN.

Powder metal (PM) materials that exhibit excellent heat treated properties and achieve good fatigue performance are needed to convert wrought components and gears to the PM process, as well as to offer a cost-effective alternate to the existing FN-020X PM material systems. North American Höganäs successfully demonstrated the excellent heat-treated properties of the newly developed […]
Sven Bengtsson, Ian Howe, Nagarjuna Nandivada, Alexander Klekovkin

September 2009

Company Profile: Gear Technology

Long known for quality and precision, this company continues making strides in the commercial aerospace and defense industries, with new markets on the horizon.

When he was a student at Loyola Marymount University, Tom Marino used to watch planes land at the nearby Hughes Aircraft plant in Culver City, California. Little did he know at the time how the activity he observed would eventually figure into his own future.“My father, James John Marino, was a WWII bombadier who ended […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

New Gains in Grinding Pinions

In building a machine that completely grinds pump pinions in a single clamping Junker presents a unique production technology, and the ability to replace three machines with a single unit.

The demand for lower costs and higher flexibility are shaping modern production more than ever before. Mechanical engineering companies are in turn required to develop ever more advanced, flexible and economical machines. Erwin Junker Machinery—headquartered in Germany, with its U.S. location in Elgin, Illinois—attempts to meet these challenges every day. As an example, since 1985 […]
Anita Fey

Gear Hardening Goes Green

As the gear industry reinvents itself, “green manufacturing” gains prominence by factoring all aspects of the process into achieving efficient outcomes.

In his annual message to Congress in December of 1862, President Abraham Lincoln concluded with the words “We can succeed only by concert. It is not ‘can any of us imagine better?’ but ‘can we all do better?’ The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high […]
Mark Davis

Gear Tooth Fillet Profile Optimization

In this article you'll learn about a fillet profile optimization technique that allows for substantial bending stress reduction, producing a variety of gear performance benefits.

Historically, gear geometry improvement efforts were concentrated on the working involute flanks. They are nominally well described and classified by different standard accuracy grades, depending on gear application and defining their tolerance limits for such parameters as runout, profile, lead, pitch variation, and others. Working involute flanks are also modified to localize a bearing contact […]
Alexander Kapelevich, Dr. Yuriy Shekhtman

Cryogenic Treatment of Gears

Utilized to transform retained austenite and raise the hardness of the as-quenched structure, better dimensional stability is often achieved as a result of cryogenic treatment.

Most companies are looking for a secret that can help them keep a step ahead of the competition… a little edge to run faster, cheaper, and more efficiently than the competitor. That secret is cryogenics. Cryogenic processing—the deep chilling of tool steel so that the molecular structure of the metal is brought to “cryogenic stillness” […]
Kathi Bond

A New Approach to Shop-Floor Gear Inspection

Marposs has responded to a need for a shop-floor inspection system, allowing for real-time inspection of gears in various stages of production without the need for skilled setup.

Gear production is one of the most difficult tasks to be found in modern manufacturing. Producing complex, non-linear, three-dimensional geometries in hard, strong materials with an extremely high level of precision is a daunting challenge in its own right. Inspecting the results of the various manufacturing operations to assure consistent quality and performance is even […]
Gary Sicheneder, Roberto Baruchello

Axis of Rotation Metrology for Improved Gearing

Spindle metrology can help you produce better gears, and it is an excellent new tool for diagnosing error sources in the machining process.

In the history of machine tools, spindles have been very good relative to other bearings and structures on the machine. So quality professionals have developed a cache of tools—such as ball bars, grid encoders, and displacement lasers—to help them characterize and understand the geometry of the whole structural loop. This makes sense, as this is […]
Drew Devitt

August 2009

Company Profile: X-R-I Testing, Inc.

Whether you want to send your gears in for non-destructive testing, handle it yourself, or to establish a—co-located—facility on-site, here's the company to contact.

In 1941 Detroit was a hub of the aerospace industry, with bombers being manufactured at the nearby Willow Run Airport and elsewhere, and non-destructive testing (NDT) was a promising new technology that drew the attention of a few local investors who started a business by the name of X-Ray Industries, Inc. The company became a […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Gear Cleaning Goes Ultrasonic

Ultrasonic baths can optimize gear cleaning in terms of safety, quality, and cost. The following tips will help you get the most out of this application.

The techniques for manufacturing gears and gear components do not differ dramatically from other industries. Precision cutting, grinding, polishing, and buffing are all part of the process. But manufacturing is not complete until the gear assemblies and other gearing components are cleaned and thoroughly prepped for shipment. Gears’ blind holes, threaded holes, and precision teeth […]
Del Williams

Automated Gearbox Testing

Gearboxes manufactured for the U.S. Navy must exhibit high stiffness, maximum efficiency, and low backlash. Here's how Excel Gear is achieving that goal.

Any gear manufacturing company that has worked with the United States military realizes how demanding their requirements can be. That’s certainly the case with Excel Gear, Inc., which is building gearboxes for the control of a missile launch system on the new DDG1000 series of U.S. Navy ships. These gearboxes are the drive elements for […]
William L. Winterbauer, Ph.D.

A Software Solution for Gear Noise Problems

The development of a Continuous Variable Transmission, and the precision required by its gearing, was enabled by the professionals at LMS International. Here's the story.

Finnish-based tractor manufacturer Valtra’s continued drive toward innovation remains imperative for its future success. With tractor sales falling worldwide in 2009, they must continue to meet customer’s growing demands in the face of stiff competition from the likes of John Deere and Case New Holland, while at the same time making inroads into emerging markets. […]
Jennifer Schlegel

Duration Through Diversification

A wide range of capabilities at work in diverse markets helps companies like Forest City Gear to remain competitive and thrive during tough economic times.

As the gear manufacturing industry weathers the economic downturn along with everyone else, one key to survival involves remaining active in a wide range of markets, in terms of their activities and geography as well. Forest City Gear Co. serves as a case study in this type of market diversification, further defining its reputation by […]
Everett Hawkins

Gear Tooth Temperature Measurements

Much can be learned from measuring the temperature of gears under load. The following paper describes an experimental technique developed specifically for this purpose.

This paper presents the technique developed to measure the temperature on various active portions of a gear operating under load, at high speeds, and the results obtained. Comparison of the measured temperatures to computed temperatures utilizing standard AGMA methods is also presented. This experimental technique was developed as a part of a larger project to […]
Suren Rao, Ph.D., Douglas R. McPherson

July 2009

Company Profile: Inductoheat, Inc.

From selecting the right material for parts a company wants to manufacture, to designing the induction heat-treating system it will require, here's your source for expert guidance.

Gear companies interested in manufacturing a new part that requires induction heat-treating have options to consider. One involves devoting resources to handling everything internally—from designing the part, to researching the proper materials, to choosing the best heat-treating technique—which can result in quite an investment of both time and capital. Another requires nothing more than picking […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Retained Austenite Stabilization

Case-hardened components made of low-alloy steels often have retained austenite in the case after quenching, which can be transformed to martensite by further cooling of the component, even if the austenite stabilizes during aging at room temperature.

The phenomenon of retained austenite stabilization in tool steels is well documented [1,2]. When a steel with a martensite finish temperature (Mf) below room temperature is quenched, some austenite is retained in the microstructure. If cooling is immediately continued to a temperature below the Mf, virtually all the austenite present at room temperature can be […]
Cord Henrik Surberg, Paul Stratton

Dimensional Stability in Cryogenic Treatments

The following article describes the results of academic and industrial research into the influence of cryogenic treatment on dimensional stability in gear steel.

When cryogenically treated, case carburized steel (En 353) showed tremendous improvement in wear resistance [1]. This is due to the microstructural changes such as conversion of retained austenite to martensite and precipitation of fine alloying carbides. The equivalent grades of En 353 are BS-815M17 and IS-15NiCr1Mo12. In an earlier research work on En 353 it […]
Pete Paulin, G. Nagarajan, D. Mohan Lal, A. Bensely

Bearing Reliability in Rebuilt Gearboxes

SKF's bearing vibration analyzer has proven invaluable during the maintenance and refurbishment of gearboxes and other critical units in demanding applications.

Fifty years of ongoing development has given SKF a bearing vibration analyzer that can probe deep into rotating bearings while they are under load. Initially used as a production line tester, it’s now proving invaluable during the maintenance and refurbishment of gearboxes and other critical units in demanding applications such as aerospace. SKF vibration testing […]
Colin Roberts

Low Pressure Carburizing for Transmissions

Low pressure carburizing and high pressure gas quenching have become a preferred technology for the latest generation of transmissions. Here's why.

With the many advances that have taken place to improve quality in the gear industry, it is only logical that heat treat services would have to evolve to meet the increased demands of precision gear manufacturers. For decades gear manufacturers used atmosphere batch furnaces with integral oil quenches for the case hardening process. In recent […]
Dr. Volker Heuer

June 2009

Company Profile: Cleveland Gear Company

Long known as an expert in manufacturing worm gears and drives, this company is expanding its range of capabilities and entering exciting new markets.

In an age of vast corporations involved in a plethora of markets and activities, it’s sometimes refreshing to recall a time when a company focused on doing one thing, and doing it better than anyone else. Still, expanded capabilities can lead to both stability and growth. Such is the case with the Cleveland Gear Company, […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Abrasiveness of Boron Carbide Coatings

Parameters such as coating thickness, counterpart tempering temperature, and coating asperity sharpness in particular influence coating abrasiveness.

Hard coatings, such as boron carbide (B4C), can quickly polish the surface of the mating material during sliding contact. The abrasiveness of such coatings directly relates to their ability to polish and sharply decreases as sliding progresses. The abrasiveness also strongly depends upon the sharpness of the individual coating asperities. Various parameters influence the rate […]
Jane Qian Wang, Matthew Siniawski, Stephen J. Harris

Quality Cleaning for Gearing Applications

Just as there are many different methods for cleaning gears, there are many considerations to be aware of as well. Read on for an in-depth description.

Gears are precision components that place great demands on cleaning. The cleaning industry offers various solutions in order to fulfil these demands both economically and ecologically. Contamination from the manufacturing process—chips and residues from machining media, for example—may result in excessive wear and functional impairment for gear wheels. The quality of subsequent manufacturing processes such […]
Doris Schulz

High Pressure Water Deburring

Friendly both to parts and the environment, this process is gaining momentum in the gear-manufacturing industry as its many benefits are discovered.

Increasingly, gear manufacturers and others are expected to deliver burr-free clean parts to the point of use. To meet this challenge, part manufacturers are turning to new technologies. Traditional mechanical and abrasive deburring methods include hand and/or robotic mechanical deburring with deburring tools and rotary brushes or vibratory finishing. Abrasive Flow Machining (AFM), Thermal Energy […]
Richard Bertsche

Lubricant Contaminants Limit Gear Life

It's been estimated that 82 percent of machine wear is particle-induced, pointing to the importance of purchasing quality lubricants and keeping them free of particulate matter.

Lubricant cleanliness refers to the absence of contamination.1 Microscopic particles are the most harmful form of contamination in lubricants. They can irreversibly damage gear and bearing surfaces, shorten the service life of equipment, and cause unexpected breakdowns.1-4 The concentration of particles in new “as supplied” drums of lubricant can differ by as much as a […]
Mary Moon, Ph.D.

May 2009

Company Profile: Brelie Gear Co., Inc.

Take an established company with experienced personnel, throw major capital investments into the mix, and what you end up with is a recipe for success.

When he first toured the company he was considering purchasing, Steve Janke encountered a sight that many who’d experienced the "old days" of the gear-manufacturing industry would find thrilling—a roomful of manual Barber Coleman machines. While he realized that a significant capital investment would be required to update the company’s technology, he also took away […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Optimizing Ring Gear Forging

Efficiency matters, and the following article describes research resulting in the reduction of forging stages, temperature, and material wastage when producing ring gears.

The objective of this research was to develop an optimum preform/blocker forge geometry for a ring gear blank, which would minimize material usage and reduce the number of forging stages by using a volume mapping or other suitable technique. A 2D (axisymmetric) and 3D computer models were used to simulate the forging process (forward simulation) […]
Jay S. Gunasekera, Bhavin V. Mehta, Mazyad Almohaileb

Grinding Internal Planetary Gears

MHI experts describe an internal gear grinding machine that has been developed for precise and efficient grinding of ring gears in automobile planetary gear systems.

Recently, various articles regarding planetary gear systems have been written and published in magazines such as Gear Solutions. In the main these articles cover design methods, simulation and numerical analysis to reduce the noise, vibration, and transmission errors, rather than describing the gear cutting methods to produce these systems. Needless to say, to reduce the […]
Masashi Ochi, Yoshikoto Yanase

Carburizing Wind-Turbine Gears

An inside glimpse into the development of the first integral-quench batch furnace in the United States approved for carburizing critical gears for wind-turbine applications.

Flame Metals Processing Corp. is a 23 year-old company that heat treats ferrous and nonferrous components in atmosphere and vacuum furnaces at two locations in the Twin Cities area. Today the company is also a certified supplier of carburized gears for wind-turbine applications. In 2006 Flame Metals was approached by Columbia Gear, a gear manufacturing […]
Mike LaPlante

April 2009

Company Profile: Advanced Machine & Engineering Co.

Whether it's tombstones, mechanical clamp-force cylinders, or self-aligning fixture elements, this company has the answers to your workholding challenges.

When Willy Goellner immigrated to the United States from Germany in the late 1950s he brought with him business contacts that would lead to the founding of his own company, Advanced Machine & Engineering (AME). “The company began by providing contract machining services,” according to the founder’s son, Alvin Goellner, who is product manager of […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

The Principles of Workholding: Part III

In the third—and final—installment in a multi-part series on workholding, Toolink Engineering and König-mtm discuss inspection, special fixtures, and more.

To conclude our three-part series on the principles of workholding we will begin with an overview of inspection devices, both hydraulic and mechanical. Next we will introduce some holding fixtures for special applications such as tapered bore components, clamping devices with multiple clamping functions, and devices with unique features for special applications. Finally, we will […]
Tim Peterson CMfgT, Juergen Kempf

A Hard Turn Toward Efficiency

While grinding is the traditional finishing technique for hardened steel gears, hard part turning provides quite a few benefits that may improve your process, and your product.

Since its broader introduction in the mid 1980s hard part turning has evolved considerably as a machining process. Developments of machinery, component material, hardening processes, cutting tools, and complete set-ups has made the metal cutting of hardened parts an attractive alternative to grinding, and easily accessible for any machine shop involved in gear manufacturing.   […]
Christer Richt

Workholding That Works

Smart manufacturers can maximize their workholding investment by learning how to use these devices efficiently and to the full extent of their capacity. Drewco provides important tips.

Like most manufactures, gear manufacturers today find themselves with the challenge of maintaining viability, maximizing profits, and enhancing productivity. Most are also experiencing varying states of budgetary constraints. Whether you have no budget, or some form of a limited budget, the takeaway from the current economic situation is clear. It is the old adage “make […]
Ann Pettibone

March 2009

Company Profile: West Michigan Spline

As a young man he experienced Detroit's productivity at its peak, and he has since managed to carve out his own "small niche in the world."

As a teenager he was working at a hamburger joint in the early seventies when he got to know a couple of guys who came in for lunch a few times each week. A senior in high school at the time, they offered him a job once he’d graduated, which he eagerly accepted. The company […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Protecting Gears in Wind Power Applications

The following article, presented by lubrication experts with Kluber, discusses the benefits of high performance oils for heavily loaded gears in wind power stations.

In wind power stations, both fluid (lubricating oils) and consistent (lubricating greases) lubricants are used. The main task of the lubricant is to ensure reliable operation of the machine elements. Important lubrication points in wind turbines are in the main gear drive, the yaw system gear, the main and generator bearing, the pitch adjustment unit, […]
Ari-Pekka Holm, Hermann Siebert

Hard Fact of Hard Rack Milling

The following paper concludes that hard rack milling for finishing hardened racks provides the same level of accuracy as rack grinding, with lower costs and shorter cycle times.

Rack gears used for rack and pinion assembly are often hardened to increase durability. In most cases a finish grinding process is necessary for correcting the distortion of racks after heat treatment. If the hardened gear racks are finished by milling instead of grinding it will increase productivity and cut production costs considerably. The major […]
Yoshikazu Tomioka

Better Broaching through Process Control

Those concerned with streamlining their broaching process will appreciate the following step-by-step description of aspects to be examined, understood, and improved.

Is your broaching process capable and predictable? Many are not. This article will discuss why and how performance metric based management can help bring your broaching operation into control. Predictability and reliability are desirable in every operation in the factory to create sustained value. Find an unstable process and you’ve found heartburn for managers. This […]
Ken Nemec

February 2009

Company Profile: KGK International

This company is constantly seeking manufacturers of equipment that will save gear manufacturers time and money while providing the quality and accuracy they require.

As a longtime distributor of Okuma machine tools, KGK International—which is based in Buffalo Grove, Illinois—was already well acquainted with the gear manufacturing industry and interested in broadening its related offerings. With many Japan-based manufacturers seeking representation in the United States, KGK had quite a few to choose from, but it finally decided to focus […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Investigating Epicyclic Gear Whine

Testing epicyclic gear systems leads to discoveries that will help eliminate gear noise during the design phase.

Gear whine is a major source of unwanted noise in automotive applications. It is tonal in nature, which makes it more apparent to the human ear than other stochastic noise mechanisms. Prediction of gear whine behavior in automatic transmissions is a particularly complex problem, where the conventional FEA approach precludes the rapid assessment of “what […]
Dr. J. Pears, Dr. F. Kamaya, Dr. M. Eccles

SKF Keeps Wind Turbines Spinning

The signing of a contract for more than 5,000 sets of SKF’s latest high capacity cylindrical roller bearings (HCCRB) for wind turbines will give added load carrying capacity, more reliability and longer life to the Nanjing Gear Company’s range of gearboxes for wind applications. The following article—based on a recent site visit—explores the reasons for […]
Colin Roberts

Gearing Up for Land, Sea, and Air

Arrow Gear describes how the use of advanced design technology is expanding its range of power transmission applications in a wide range of environments.

As with many other industries, ongoing advancements in the precision gear industry are bringing about a paradigm shift in the way gearing products are manufactured. Arrow Gear Company—widely known as an innovator in the gear business, and among the most technically advanced facilities in the world—is pushing forward into the next generation of production technique […]
James J. Cervinka, Joseph L. Arvin

January 2009

Company Profile: Excel Gear Inc.

When he couldn't obtain the precision gearing he needed for high-speed applications from his suppliers, one man decided to begin designing and manufacturing them himself.

In the late eighties, while working as a design engineer for a large machine tool company, N.K. Chinnusamy—who is known familiarly as “Chinn”—began to wonder about the gears they were purchasing for high-speed applications. While he’d been assured the gears were of the highest quality, AGMA 14, there was simply too much noise and vibration […]
Gear Solutions Magazine

Tooth-Bending Effects in Plastic Spur Gears

The results of extensive modeling and testing, conducted by DSM Research BV, reveal the key differences in mechanics and wear of plastic gears.

This paper describes the investigation of a steel-plastic gear transmission, using both numerical (FE) and analytical methods. The aim was to study the influence of the stiffness of the gear material on the bending of the gear teeth and the consequences on contact path, load sharing, stresses, and kinematics. As has been shown in earlier […]
Dr. Ir. H.G.H Van Melick

Higher Contact Ratios for Quieter Gears

Gear noise can indicate flawed design or an inferior product, and it also reflects on the quality and precision of your manufacturing operation. The following analysis suggests solutions.

Low-noise behavior in standard industrial gear units is becoming an important selection criterion and a factor indicating gear quality to the customer. In several gear tests and practical researches the gear contact ratio has been reported with a large effect on noise level, especially in spur gear applications. Lower noise levels are generally associated with […]
Dr. Gonzalo Gonzalez Rey

The Principles of Workholding: Part II

The second in a multi-part series on workholding, in this installment Toolink Engineering and König-mtm discuss the pros and cons of mechanical workholding devices.

This is the second installment of a series of articles devoted to presenting and/or introducing the various designs—and principles behind the design—of workholding devices that have established a proven foothold within the gear manufacturing industry.  The intent of this particular article is to discuss mechanical workholding and identify its strengths, limitations, and areas of common […]
Tim Peterson CMfgT, Juergen Kempf
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